Letters to the editor: June 12, 2020

Yes, Virginia, there is a virus

In back-to-back May and June letters, Dan Katz has suggested there is no COVID-19 pandemic.

He certainly has a right to his opinion, but when he uses questionable analyses of Centers for Disease Control statistics to support his claim, I must take exception. The fact is, his conclusion could pose a threat to the lives of others.

First, his comparison of CDC data for the first quarter of the last three years for multiple causes of death isn’t logical. There are many variables that could affect those numbers, even if the totals don’t change much from year to year.

Second, during the first quarter of 2020, the virus was just starting to spread, so diagnosis of the disease and determination of the cause was haphazard. In many cases, it was not yet being systematically quantified and tracked.

If you look at the most current data from the CDC, Johns Hopkins University or even Bing COVID-19 sites, it shows, without question, that we’re experiencing a pandemic. All three report about the same totals.

Deaths from COVID-19 for the first quarter of this year ran just 4,000 to 5,000. But the toll soared to 57,000 at the end of April and 97,500 at the end of May.

By June 6, the death count has pushed past 111,000. How is that not something to be taken seriously?

Randy Sollars



A needed voice

Thank you very much for your recent coverage of the welcome and needed voice of Dr. Miles Davis.

His transparency about being sexually abused as well as his experiences with racial prejudice. They are very helpful for any local conversations about these issues, and encourage us to be part of the solution in dealing with them.

His heart, his wide experience and his leadership are crucial assets in helping Yamhill County communities navigate their way to becoming safer, healthier and more than just places to live, work and go to school.

Bob Thompson



Time to mask up again

On May 18 of 1980 — 40 years ago now — Washington’s Mount St. Helens erupted with a massive explosion pulverizing 1,300 feet of mountain top. The ash spread from Washington to Maine.

I was living on my farm southwest of McMinnville, raising prunes, cherries and walnuts. My beautiful orchard was blanketed with gray volcanic ash.

Like today, with the COVID-19 pandemic, it was a most depressing period of life.

Back then, wearing a mask was a must, and everyone did. Now, a lot of us don’t wear one, even though the danger is much greater.

You probably recall Harry Truman, who died on the mountain. He was told many times to leave, but out of love for his home and mountain, refused.

Today, like Harry, we refuse. But unlike Harry, who only jeopardized his own life, we jeopardize those of others.

For the sake of your life — and mine — wear the mask.

Dick White



Resist urban dictators

When I heard the county was moving to Phase 2 restrictions, I was hopeful. But I don’t see much difference, and according to Gov. Kate Brown, “Phase 2 is the last full phase until there is a widely available treatment or vaccine.”

Just today, Dr. Anthony Fauci said, “It’s likely we will know if anything will work by the end of the year, yet distribution to the general  public is unlikely until next year.” That means she intends to continue her food and beverage stranglehold until next year, which makes no sense.

Our officials expect those in the hospitality industry to thank them for the opportunity to work just as hard to maybe break even. How would farmer/commissioner Casey Kulla like it if he could only harvest maybe 50% of his crops?

The silly 6-foot distancing is still in place, so you can’t sit at the bar enjoying a beer, talking with a stranger and hassling the bartender. And I guess COVID-19 is more prevalent after midnight, because we all have to be home by then.

I sat at an outside table in Newberg last week to drink a beer with two friends. But we had to move inside, because one of us was left too close to passing foot traffic.

Really? It’s time to drop this distancing, especially outdoors.

Maybe it’s time we stood up to the urban dictators and said, “Enough is enough. Let us decide if the risk is too great.”

Extensive data says victims tend to have compromised immune systems or other serious health issues, especially those of us over 70. Well, I’m willing to take the risk.

McMinnville is on the cusp of becoming another ghost town. Unless we relax these restrictions, it won’t matter if the virus is prevalent or not.

Steve Sommerfeld



Help with wall

We now have two walls in this country.

The Mexican government was unwilling to pay for the first wall. Perhaps it could be persuaded to help fund the second wall.

Maybe we, the citizens, could assure our southern neighbors we wouldn’t allow anyone to jump this wall to start bible-thumping and tear-gassing peaceful folks.

This help would be greatly appreciated. It could help us rectify a mistake we made three and a half years ago.

Bob and Ann McNamee



Cloak of anonymity

I read an article today about Jeff Bezos, head of Amazon. It cited a hateful text he had received in angry response to his support for the current police brutality protests.

The article included a screen shot of the racist and obscenity-filled racist diatribe. However, the last name of the sender had been blurred out.

I’d like to know why.

I sign my full name to any comment I make in a letter like this, and so should the people who like to send hate screeds and threats.

When a text or e-mail is so vile as to become a news item, the author’s full name should be included. If nothing else, the loss of anonymity would likely reduce the flow of hate mail and garbage philosophy.

Fred Fawcett



Equal time and space

We have subscribed to the Telephone-Register, News-Register and now Liberal-Register for more than 60 years.

What has happened to our good old non-partisan newspaper? How about some conservative editorials getting equal time and space?

Please continue local news stories without a liberal slant here and there. No more fake news.

Jim and Joy Beard




With regard to Randy Sollars' Letter above:

Well, after a few years to gather more information, my estimate

for the number of people killed by "the virus" is precisely zero.

It's really a moot question.


Because based on hundreds of FOIA requests around the world, to date:

"The virus" has never been purified.

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